Salmon with a minty miso glaze

Salmon with minty miso glaze

First things first, I entered my Orecchiette with Ramps and Fiddleheads recipe into the Spring Pasta Competition over at Italy Magazine. There are a lot of other delicious sounding entries to check out. Oh and don’t forget to vote:-)

Also, Sticky Gooey Creamy Chewy gave us a Yummy blog award. While we don’t participate in memes, I wanted to post a link to her truly yummy blog to say thanks!

I knew I was going to be home late from work today and was trying to figure out what I could make that wasn’t going to have me eating at midnight. I decided to do some kind of seafood and it was either going to be prawns with a tamarind sauce, or salmon… whichever was cheaper/fresher at Wholefoods.

I got there and they had the end pieces of bigger fillets on sale for $4.99 a pound. SCORE! I’d originally thought about having it with some baby mizuna greens, but on the way to the cashier I saw a little yucca sitting there all by its lonesome just begging to be cooked. More on this in my next post…

While I love having most fish prepared simply with some olive oil, a dash of salt and lemon for squeezing, salmon has a bit of a “taste” and I didn’t much care for it as a kid. I’ve grown to like it, but it’s still not one of my favourite fish.

Among salmon’s redeeming qualities are that it’s got a ton of oil if you get the right cut, it’s easy to find and it’s farmed (although there’s some debate as to the ecological impacts of fish farming), so you don’t have to worry about depleting the ocean’s supply.

When you buy salmon, in addition to checking for freshness (firm, glistening meat), try to get cuts that come from closer to the head as they tend to have more oil that will keep it moist. You can tell where it’s from by looking at the shape, the cut’s near the tail are shaped like the letter “D” when viewed in profile while the cuts coming from near the head are shaped like a the letter “P” when viewed in profile. You can also usually see more marbling of fat in the pieces from near the head.

Minty Miso Glaze on the salmon

Getting back to that “taste” that salmon has, I think of it kind of like lamb. It’s not so unpleasant as to make it inedible, but it’s not something I look forward to tasting. Despite this, I love lamb and I’ve found ways to mask some of the “taste” without covering up all the other good qualities of the meat. Using lots of aromatics like garlic and mint really help. I thought I’d try out the same technique on my salmon.

The glaze is decidedly Japanese with its sweet miso and sesame base, but the garlic, cilantro and mint add a wonderful fresh Southeast Asian element that really makes this dish. The combo of flavors is quite unique and I’d imagine it would go well on all kinds of things (grilled eggplant, grilled squid, lamb kabobs, etc).

1 Tbs toasted sesame seeds ground with mortar and pestle
2 Tbs white miso
2 Tbs mirin
1 tsp dark brown sugar
1.5 Tbs mint finely minced
1 Tbs cilantro finely minced
1 clove garlic finely minced

2-4 salmon fillets

Whisk the sesame seeds, miso, mirin, and sugar together with a fork (you might need to use the back of the fork to mash up the miso a little first). Add the mint, cilantro and garlic stir to combine.

If you’re BBQing, get your fire going and make sure you have a cooler area of the fire to put the fish on.

If you’re using the broiler, put your oven rack in the middle of the oven and turn the broiler on high. Get a pan with a wire rack on top ready (I just use a shelf out of the toaster oven on top of a baking sheet).

Just before you’re ready to throw the salmon in the oven, give it a nice thick coating of glaze, especially on top (the meat side). Place the salmon, on the rack, skin side down.

Cook until the glaze is nice and brown and the salmon is just barely translucent at it’s thickest part 7-12 minutes depending on the thickness of the salmon and the temperature of your heat source. If the glaze starts to burn before the salmon is done, lay a piece of foil on top of the salmon.

  • http://www.justgetfloury.blogspot.com/ Ginny

    Glaze sounds excellent! yummy! Nice and inexpensive too! My kinda shopping! :)

  • http://www.justgetfloury.blogspot.com/ Ginny

    Glaze sounds excellent! yummy! Nice and inexpensive too! My kinda shopping! :)

  • http://allthingsnice.typepad.com/tastebuddies/ Syrie

    Hi Marc, I make a similar marinade and put it on everything. Your fish looks divine! I voted for you…good luck! By the way, thanks for the really interesting fact about tempura.

  • http://allthingsnice.typepad.com/tastebuddies/ Syrie

    Hi Marc, I make a similar marinade and put it on everything. Your fish looks divine! I voted for you…good luck! By the way, thanks for the really interesting fact about tempura.

  • http://stickygooeycreamychewy.blogspot.com/ Susan at Sticky,Gooey,Creamy,C

    I love the way you fixed that salmon! It looks fantastic! I happen to really love salmon and am always looking for fresh new ways to make it.

    Thanks so much for the link too!

  • http://stickygooeycreamychewy.blogspot.com Susan at Sticky,Gooey,Creamy,Chewy

    I love the way you fixed that salmon! It looks fantastic! I happen to really love salmon and am always looking for fresh new ways to make it.

    Thanks so much for the link too!

  • http://www.noobcook.com/ noobcook

    the mint is such a nice marinade. This looks really wonderful!

  • http://www.noobcook.com noobcook

    the mint is such a nice marinade. This looks really wonderful!

  • http://www.noblepig.com/ noble pig

    What a lovely glaze I mean it’s so appetizing looking…I need a fork.

  • http://www.noblepig.com/ noble pig

    What a lovely glaze I mean it’s so appetizing looking…I need a fork.

  • http://www.weareneverfull.com/ We Are Never Full

    LOVE the addition of mint. I think it would work beautifully with this dish.

  • http://www.weareneverfull.com We Are Never Full

    LOVE the addition of mint. I think it would work beautifully with this dish.

  • http://www.sugarbar.org/ diva

    mint and miso — what a flavour!!
    it looks yummy and by the way, thanks for reminding me about how much fat is in a duck leg. tsk tsk! :) x

  • http://www.sugarbar.org diva

    mint and miso — what a flavour!!
    it looks yummy and by the way, thanks for reminding me about how much fat is in a duck leg. tsk tsk! :) x

  • http://www.cookeatfret.com/ Claudia (cook eat FRET)

    that looks wonderful. i’m not a huge salmon fan but that glaze? wow…

  • http://www.cookeatfret.com Claudia (cook eat FRET)

    that looks wonderful. i’m not a huge salmon fan but that glaze? wow…

  • http://www.souvlakiforthesoul.com/ Peter G

    Mint is always so refreshing and quite “summery”. I love how you combined it with the miso. Quite innovative!

  • http://www.souvlakiforthesoul.com Peter G

    Mint is always so refreshing and quite “summery”. I love how you combined it with the miso. Quite innovative!

  • alix

    the glaze indeed looks wonderful, but farmed salmon is a definite no-no! It is injected with all kinds of dyes to make it pink, and anti-biotics to help it survive the conditions in which it lives. Farmed salmon are mostly grown in over-crowded ponds, and therefore eat whatever is in the water. Wild salmon, if from the right areas, is fine, but don’t buy farmed, unless it has an eco-friendly label, and even then check out from where it comes!

  • alix

    the glaze indeed looks wonderful, but farmed salmon is a definite no-no! It is injected with all kinds of dyes to make it pink, and anti-biotics to help it survive the conditions in which it lives. Farmed salmon are mostly grown in over-crowded ponds, and therefore eat whatever is in the water. Wild salmon, if from the right areas, is fine, but don’t buy farmed, unless it has an eco-friendly label, and even then check out from where it comes!

  • http://voodoolily.blogspot.com/ Heather

    Salmon definitely has its own special flavor, but I tend to blend it with fruit or miso, and rarely just eat it plain. I do the same with lamb (not the fruit and miso, but eat with other strong flavors). :)

  • http://voodoolily.blogspot.com Heather

    Salmon definitely has its own special flavor, but I tend to blend it with fruit or miso, and rarely just eat it plain. I do the same with lamb (not the fruit and miso, but eat with other strong flavors). :)

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  • http://www.kalofagas.blogspot.com/ Peter

    Marc, the salmon looks wonderful and I have to now try mint with it..it’s new to me.

  • http://www.kalofagas.blogspot.com Peter

    Marc, the salmon looks wonderful and I have to now try mint with it..it’s new to me.

  • http://closetcooking.blogspot.com/ Kevin

    Salmon is my favorite fish and that glaze sounds good!

  • http://closetcooking.blogspot.com/ Kevin

    Salmon is my favorite fish and that glaze sounds good!

  • marc

    Thanks Ginny! It’s hard shopping on the cheap here in NYC, but I try to do it when I can.

    Thanks Syrie!

    Thanks Susan, noobcook, and noble pig!

    We Are Never Full, I’ve yet to try it on anything else, but I think it would work nicely.

    Diva, if it make you feel any better I’m roasting an entire duck tomorrow night.

    Claudia, salmon’s never really been my thing either, but the glaze should work with any fish.

    Peter G, mint is one of my favourite herbs, and I think it’s totally under used.

    alix, yea it’s so hard to get things that are truly eco-friendly. I really just want to get a huge piece of land with a clean river running through it and grow my own food, then I know where it’s all coming from.

    Thanks Peter and Kevin!

  • marc

    Thanks Ginny! It’s hard shopping on the cheap here in NYC, but I try to do it when I can.

    Thanks Syrie!

    Thanks Susan, noobcook, and noble pig!

    We Are Never Full, I’ve yet to try it on anything else, but I think it would work nicely.

    Diva, if it make you feel any better I’m roasting an entire duck tomorrow night.

    Claudia, salmon’s never really been my thing either, but the glaze should work with any fish.

    Peter G, mint is one of my favourite herbs, and I think it’s totally under used.

    alix, yea it’s so hard to get things that are truly eco-friendly. I really just want to get a huge piece of land with a clean river running through it and grow my own food, then I know where it’s all coming from.

    Thanks Peter and Kevin!

  • http://www.marxfoods.com/ Emily

    Now that my mint has finally come up I’m ready to pick it before it takes over the yard! I’m sure I can sacrifice a mojito or two for this recipe! Speaking of salmon, we’re having a salmon recipe contest and giving the creator of the best recipe 15 pounds of Wild Salmon! If you’d like to submit this recipe or another favorite, please do so at http://marxfoods.com.

  • http://www.marxfoods.com/ Emily

    Now that my mint has finally come up I’m ready to pick it before it takes over the yard! I’m sure I can sacrifice a mojito or two for this recipe! Speaking of salmon, we’re having a salmon recipe contest and giving the creator of the best recipe 15 pounds of Wild Salmon! If you’d like to submit this recipe or another favorite, please do so at http://marxfoods.com.

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  • http://www.kyotofoodie.com/ Peko Peko

    I LOVE the combination of mint and miso — GOOD ONE!!

    Surely you know kinome and miso in Japanese cuisine. I have some nice fresh mint growing here in my Kyoto garden. I am going to have to try this one … maybe tonight! Cilantro which I love, is not that popular with many Japanese, but I think that it would go really well with miso.

    Thanks for the idea!!

    KyotoFoodie?Peko

  • http://www.kyotofoodie.com Peko Peko

    I LOVE the combination of mint and miso — GOOD ONE!!

    Surely you know kinome and miso in Japanese cuisine. I have some nice fresh mint growing here in my Kyoto garden. I am going to have to try this one … maybe tonight! Cilantro which I love, is not that popular with many Japanese, but I think that it would go really well with miso.

    Thanks for the idea!!

    KyotoFoodie?Peko

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  • Yuki

    This was absolutely delicious! I used parsely instead of cilantro, and used 1TBS of dbs instead. It was my first time preparing salmon with broiler and I’m absolutely amazed at how fast it cooked. The combination of mint and miso is sublime! I’m glad I’m getting to ¬†know about Japanese cuisine, and this dish was just a big encouragement in getting to know more about it!

  • http://www.facebook.com/bastardo8 Henson Quek

    Hi, this is an astonishing recipe! Loving it. Could I prepared the grilling paste in advance? And how long could that paste last?

    • http://norecipes.com Marc Matsumoto

      It should last last for a few days. the herbs will be discolored, but it shouldn’t affect the taste.

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